Once again the San Diego Public Library and Comic-Con International are partnering to host the Comic Conference for Librarians and Educators, which runs July 19–23 at the Shiley Special Events Suite at the San Diego Central Library, a state-of-the-art facility a few blocks away from the San Diego Convention Center. Here is a select listing of panels for each day of the conference. A complete schedule can be found at the San Diego Public Library website.
Wednesday, July 19
■ 4–6 p.m. Teaching with Comics: An Interactive Workshop for Educators: Peter Carlson (Green Dot Public Schools), Antero Garcia (Stanford University), and Susan Kirtley (Portland State University) will lead a hands-on workshop for integrating comic books into classrooms. The workshop features David Walker (Power Man and Iron Fist), Samantha Diego (Ánimo Western Charter Middle School), Rosie Knight (Nerdist, Women Write About Comics), and Johnny Parker II (Neat-O Comics), who will share key strategies, theories, and scholarship on comics pedagogy.
Thursday, July 20
■ 10–11 a.m. Creators, Libraries, and Literacy: Authors Raina Telgemeier, Jenni and Matt Holm, Molly Ostertag, and Zander Cannon will discuss why librarians and libraries are important to them, with moderator Candice Mack (Los Angeles Public Library).
■ 11 a.m.–12 p.m. Picture Books for Grown-ups: Why Graphic Novels Matter to Adults: This panel will discuss the benefits of adult graphic novel collections to libraries and communities, give tips on how to justify these collections to library management, and review the differences between adult and teen materials. With panelists Monica Barrette (Escondido Public Library), Matthew Murray (University of Nevada, Las Vegas libraries), Lalitha Nataraj (Escondido Public Library), and Steven Torres-Roman (San Diego Public Library).
■ 1–2 p.m. Young Adult Graphic Novel and Manga Collection Essentials: What Titles Every Library Should Carry: Librarians will share their knowledge of the new and classic graphic novel and manga titles that are essential for any library’s young adult collection (including those coming in fall 2017). With panelists Loren Spector (Memorial Library), Marissa Thompson (North Hollywood Library), Jennifer Siron (Chatsworth Library), Danica Sheridan (Silver Lake Library), Angela Ocana (Santa Clara City Library), Kelly Quinn Chiu (Santa Clara City Library), and Steven Torres-Roman (San Diego Public Library).
■ 2–3 p.m. Diversity in Comics: A Librarian’s Perspective: How do library professionals handle diversity and inclusion—or the lack thereof—in their comics collection development and programming? With panelists Candice Mack (Los Angeles Public Library), Erwin Magbanua, Lalitha Nataraj (Escondido Public Library), and Lisa Valdez (Pierce Community College).
Friday, July 21
■ 12–1 p.m. Handling Challenges: Bans and Challenges to Comics: Learn about challenged and banned comics and how to deal with challenges, with panelists Raina Telgemeier (Ghosts), Candice Mack (Los Angeles Public Library), Gina Gagliano (First Second), and David Saylor (Graphix). Moderated by Betsy Gomez (Comic Book Legal Defense Fund).
■ 1–2 p.m. Read Like a Girl: Middle Grade Fiction for Girls (and Boys): Panelists will discuss the importance of overcoming the lingering perception that comics are only for boys. With Nidhi Chanani (Pashmina), Shannon Hale (Real Friends), Jenni Holm (Babymouse), Molly Ostertag (The Witch Boy), and Raina Telgemeier (Ghosts). Moderated by Brigid Alverson (Good Comics for Kids and Publishers Weekly).
■ 2–3 p.m. Nonfiction and Memoir in Graphic Novels: Learn about how nonfiction graphic novels and graphic memoirs can be used to bring awareness to marginalized perspectives in the classroom. With Box Brown (Tetris: The Games People Play), Thi Bui (The Best We Could Do), Nathan Hale (Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales), Tillie Walden (Spinning), and Alison Wilgus (Science Comics: Flying Machines).
■ 4–5 p.m. Meet the Makers: Graphic novel authors and artists Jeffrey Brown (Lucy & Andy Neanderthal), Nick Abadzis (Laika), Mike Lawrence (Star Scouts), and James Parks and Ben Costa (Rickety Stitch and the Gelatinous Goo Book 1: The Road to Epoli) will talk about the process behind making a comic.
Saturday, July 22
■ 10–11 a.m. Content Literacy: Teaching STEM with Comics: Illya Kowalchuck (Pop Culture Classroom), Brack Lee (Pop Culture Classroom), Nick Dragotta (Howtoons), M.K. Reed (Science Comics: Dinosaurs), and Alison Wilgus (Science Comics: Flying Machines) will participate in a q&a session about the best graphic novels for supporting STEM topics, moderated by Tom Racine (Tell Tale Radio).
■ 11 a.m.–12 p.m. CBLDF: Equipping Teachers to Defend Comics: Learn how to navigate resistance to the format. Join Nathan Hale (Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales), Thi Bui (The Best We Could Do), Matthew Holm (Babymouse, Squish), Meryl Jaffe, Talia Hurwich, and moderator Betsy Gomez (CBLDF).
Sunday, July 23
College/GeekEd Panels: A daylong event organized around four panels specifically focused on college and university staff, faculty, and students. Panels include “Nerdentity,” “Shall We Play a Game,” “The Nerd Mind,” and “Comics in Secondary Education.”